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Legal Information: Washington

Restraining Orders

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December 3, 2020

Am I eligible to file for a domestic violence order for protection?

You are eligible to file for a domestic violence order for protection if you or your minor child have been the victim of domestic violence at the hands of:

  • your spouse or former spouse;
  • your domestic partner or former domestic partner;
  • someone you have a child in common with;
  • adult persons related to you by blood or marriage;
  • adult persons living with you now or who have lived with you in the past;
  • someone you dated or are dating as long as the abuser is 16 or older; or
  • someone who has a biological or legal parent-child relationship with you, including step-parents and step-children, and grandparents and grandchildren.1

If you are 16 or older, you can file for an order for protection on your own, without permission from an adult. If you are under 16, you will need a parent, guardian, guardian ad litem or “next friend” to file for you. A “next friend” is anyone over 18 years of age, chosen by the minor who is able to pursue the court case for the minor and state his/her wishes in court.2

If you do not meet any of these requirements, there may be another order that applies to your situation. Go to our Civil Anti-Harassment Orders page, Sexual Assault Protection Orders and Stalking Protection Orders page for more information.

If someone other than one of these people is hurting you, there are other petitions that you may be eligible to file for protection against violence. See What other types of orders may help me?

1 R.C.W. § 26.50.010(2)
2 R.C.W. § 26.50.020(8)